What to Do With Old Family Photos
It's sad that each time an elderly person dies, their photos are left behind, often without anybody knowing who is in them. But these are a treasure you need to retain and share. Each time somebody dies, there are usually 2-3 children or family members and only one can get the album. Nobody's sure what to do with all those photos, especially as they have no names. But here's the best thing to do.
First, scan them all in. If you can spot any good order, then it can help to do some grouping. e.g. with my parents old photos I created three albums, based on how people looked in them. One was: dad before he met mum, then mum before she met dad - and lastly mum/dad/us since they met. There was a 4th album I created for all those other miscellaneous photos, such as aerial views of the house they'd purchased, family weddings of cousins and even a couple of photos of their friends since they'd retired.
In fact, if you can, it's a good idea to scan in all your old family photos now - while there are people who might be able to remember the events and who is in them!
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Next, look into doing family history research to try to track down other grandchildren/great grandchildren of your elderly relative. Discover who they all are - you might find 2-3 of them are already active in family history and have a big family tree project they've been doing for years. With the images already scanned you can offer them up to other family members you track down and they might be able to put names to some of them.
In any case, with all photos, only ONE person can only have a copy, meaning that families lose sight of these photos as somebody dies and only one person takes the album With yours scanned in you're able to share them - and encourage others to do the same.
I recently sent a scan of an old photo from the 1950s to my great-aunt - and it was a photo of her and her siblings all together that she had never seen before; indeed, it was then the ONLY photo she had of all of them together as young children. That photo meant a lot to her. Imagine if I'd just chucked them all in the bin as "unknown".
You'd be surprised how, over time, you can manage to track down and name most people in the old photos you've got.
Go on - make somebody's day!
Image Credit » Author's photo, an old family wedding from our family album